Motherhood wasn't on my radar until I was told I may not have kids
I never wanted children. I feel the need to confess that right from the start because being a mother is so much a part of who I am now that it bears mentioning that I never ever wanted kids.
I always loved my nieces and nephews, but I knew that kids just weren't for me. "Babies don't like me. Kids are too messy and loud." I gave every excuse, and I truly believed that it took a particular kind of woman to be a mom. That woman wasn't me.
Fast forward to 22 years old. I was having medical investigations done when a doctor noted some problems with my ovaries. They were full of cysts. I had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. After a battery of tests, I found out that the likelihood of me having children was next to nothing. I would need IVF for certain, and I needed to get started right away, as the older I got, the less likely it would be to work, if it ever would.
At that point, I panicked. The sudden and unexpected knowledge that I no longer had the option of changing my mind weighed heavily. I suddenly realized that the years of being anti-children were just me being young and stupid. To put it bluntly, it was a front because I grew up thinking no one would ever love me enough to want to have a baby with me.
Everything changed from that day. Though I was newlywed and living in a foreign country, I began in earnest trying to get pregnant. As the years flew by without a child, I began to fear the worst. I ended up going through fertility treatments, though my then-husband got cold feet and basically refused to participate. My body felt ready, but our hearts weren't in it.
Eventually that marriage disintegrated. My hopes of becoming a mother were dashed into a million pieces. I thought it was all over.
About six months after our split, I met Mark, a fellow American also living overseas, only 20 minutes from my house. We had a nine-hour first date, and he told me that he wanted to marry me. It's as close to love at first sight as I've ever experienced. After less than two months, he asked me to move in, and I accepted. A month later we found out we were expecting our first child.
Baby #1 - February 16, 2011
We have since been blessed with two more beautiful babies, a total of three amazing little boys who make our life so perfect.
Baby #2 - February 12, 2013
Baby #3 - October 22, 2014
It is only recently that we moved close to my husband's family. They get to see our boys as they grow, and they are involved in their day-to-day lives. It is beautiful to see how excited my kids get when they know we're going to Grandma's house or they're going to see their cousins. But there's a whole side of the family they don't know well. My side. The ones who live on the other side of the country and who have to get updates via Facebook or through too-infrequent phone calls.
How I have longed to be able to share with them our everyday life as it happens.
When I was introduced to the RealTimes app, I knew it was something special. In the past, I have spent hours editing videos and photos into stories that I could send to family. It takes a lot of effort and tricky software, and it is difficult to find the time to do it. But RealTimes takes care of the tricky part and requires very little effort. With a great selection of music, amazing transitions and effects and an intuitive interface, all it requires is for you to choose the photos and videos you want to use; it does the rest.
This Fourth of July holiday was our first with the new baby, and the first ever when we've been with family. I took photos and videos galore to commemorate the occasion, and I was able to put together a brilliant video to send to my parents. It took me less than five minutes, and with one click of a button they were able to watch it on their television screen.
I shared it on Facebook, I emailed it to a few people and I have it saved in the RealTimes cloud so that I can watch it whenever I want.
Becoming a mother was the best thing that ever happened to me. My kids are everything to me, and I relish the chance to capture every blessed moment with ease. I look forward to each stage of their development... and mine! Every time they change and grow, so do I. Being a mom doesn't come with instructions, but we do our best and we try to give all of ourselves. I hope that these precious moments are remembered by my boys as they get older, but if they aren't, at least I have some great videos to help them.
Disclosure: This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between RealTimes and SheKnows.